Influence of bit design on the stability of a rotary drilling system

Kaixiao Tian, R. Ganesh, Emmanuel Detournay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


This paper extends the RGD model originally proposed by Richard et al. (J Sound Vib 305(3):432–456, 2007, to investigate drilling-induced vibrations, by considering idealized drag bits characterized either by multiple angular offsets between the blades or by a combination of full and partial blades, a departure from the symmetric bit of the RGD model consisting of multiple continuous blades. The RGD model is built on a two-degrees of freedom discrete representation of the drillstring combined with a rate-independent bit/rock interaction law. By relaxing the original constraints on the bit geometry, the coupled state-dependent delay differential equations governing the angular and axial motions of the bit now contain multiple state-dependent time delays. A linear stability analysis leads to explicit expressions for the critical rotational speed(s) defining two different regimes of stability of the coupled dynamics. Stability maps indicate that both groups of bits have a better axial stability than their RGD counterparts. It is also found that multiple critical rotation speeds exist for certain bit geometries, in contrast to the single axial stability boundary of the original RGD model. Time simulations confirm the predictions of the linear stability analysis and show evidence of the existence of different types of quasi-periodic responses before the establishment of a limit cycle characterized by both axial and torsional stick-slip events.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51-75
Number of pages25
JournalNonlinear Dynamics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2020

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© 2020, Springer Nature B.V.


  • Delay differential equations
  • Drillstring dynamics
  • Stability of rotary drilling systems
  • Stick-slip oscillations


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